Questions tagged [aesthetics]

Aesthetics is the study of the beautiful. It is one of the classical sub-disciplines of philosophy.

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What is the enigma of art?

I've always been fascinated by the following constellated section of Adorno's Aesthetic Theory, probably because phenomenology is intuitively easier to get to grips with than a drawn out critical ...
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What does the philosopher Bruno Latour mean when he claims that we have never been modern?

I am trying to read Bruno Latour's paper "A cautious Prometheus? A few steps towards philosophy of design" but have no background in philosophy and so would be happy if someone could help me ...
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What does Danto mean when he writes that artworks are “embodied meanings”?

In his paper "The Art World Revisited" Arthur Danto wrote: The thesis which emerged from my book The Transfiguration of the Commonplace is that works of art are symbolic expressions, and ...
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Does all art have a sentiment?

It occurred to me that when e.g. reading poetry, I attach a lot of significance to a kind of sentiment. It seems independent of how genteel the work is. I am interested in finding a way of thinking ...
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What is the current state of the Philosophy of Video Games?

Since there is philosophy of literature and philosophy of film I was wondering if someone could describe the current state of the philosophy of video games since there doesn't seem to be any articles ...
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heteropathic and idiopathic identification

Reading the book "Art and Psychoanalysis" by Maria Walsh on modern art criticism and philosophy, I encountered the words "heteropathic identification" and "idiopathic identification". Do they mean ...
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Are there objective criteria for aesthetic judgment?

Are there objective criteria for judging whether or not artworks are good art? Should we at times appeal to moral values in assessing the quality of artwork? What major approaches are there for the ...
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Where should I start reading about aesthetics philosophy?

I am totally new to philosophy (actually studying engineering) but the philosophy of aesthetics fascinates me. Which books should I start reading to study about the way socio-economic factors ...
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What were the moral and aesthetic ideas that Camus was interested in?

I have read most of the books by Albert Camus thoroughly. I know that Camus' theory is absurdity but I want to know his take on morality. I mean, what were the moral and aesthetic ideas that Camus was ...
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What does this quote mean about Plato's Cave?

Simon Blackburn is describing the Poetic Interpretation of ascending from Plato's Cave: Part of the charm of Plato is the sense of being in a world in which these fractures did not exist. Ours may ...
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Is Deleuze saying that the “virtual” generates beauty and lies outside affect?

This article says All this is most fully worked out in Difference and Repetition(1994). What Deleuze calls the virtual is the there posed as the transcendental condition of all ...
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Is art a form of communication?

I recently got into a discussion where the other person claimed that art is a form of communication. Bearing in mind that the definition of art is disputed, did any philosophers argue that a work ...
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Is the value of art always contextual, or can it ever be inherent?

A few years back, I was in a modern art museum and saw this painting by Russian Suprematist artist Kazimir Malevich: It seems to me that the value of this painting lies completely in the identity of ...
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What is the Schillerian concept for sublime that at the same time means attraction and repulsion?

There is German word that Schiller uses to explain beauty, a word that at the same time means attraction and repulse. He uses that word instead of the Kantian "awe" for The Sublime. Does anyone ...
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Is the category of aesthetic truth still important?

The notion of aesthetic truth - here to be understood as more than simply 'correct judgments of taste' [1] - has been brought into discussion by a lot of thinkers: Hegel, Adorno, Lukacs, Heidegger, ...
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In what sense does philosophy, especially aesthetics, live on, for Adorno?

The introduction to Negative Dialectics begins Philosophy, which once seemed outmoded, remains alive because the moment of its realization was missed. The summary judgement that it had merely ...
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the threatened return of the look

The following text is from Art and Psychoanalysis by Maria Walsh. Does anybody know what threatens the return of the look in the bold section? Context: The other, as black man, acts as both a ...
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Does contemporary art embody the desacralisation of western culture?

It's noticeable that all the great artistic traditions embody their religious worldviews: Hindu temples, Christian churches, Greek statues of gods and heroes, Egyptian sarcophagi, etc. However, ...
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Julia Kristeva's idea about abjection and aesthetics

Can any body explain what Julia Kristeva means in the text below? Can anybody write it in more understandable plain English? Text: In a world in which the Other has collapsed, the aesthetic task -a ...
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Harm Principle and the eventual harm of creating needs

A necessity or a need is a necessary condition for something else. A need in Economics and particularly a consumer need is something needed to be consumed, a necessary condition for achieving higher ...
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Is there a philosophical term or theory that defines or describes the idea of 'epiphany'?

I am new to the philosophy stack exchange, so please let me know if I need to clarify this question further. I am curious if there is a distinction made in philosophical fields between a typical step-...
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Does a work of art contain any meaning one can come up with?

I've read in some blog that any piece of art contains any meaning that any reader or spectator may find in it. Has something similar been explored in philosophical works, or was it an 'original' ...
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Philosophers who view Aesthetics as an application of other fields of Philosophy?

I'm not looking to have a debate on stackexchange about wether aesthetics is a branch in itself. However, I am looking for sources, or just recommendations of writers of aesthetics, who view ...
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Reference Request: Where can I read about philosophy of the digital arts?

I am interested in reading about ways to evaluate art that are done solely by computers (computer generated art) or otherwise by the help of computers or by the usage of computers such as in digital ...
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Why does my appreciation of female physical beauty tend to be presumed to be sexual?

Apologies for the topic; I could not find a way to say it any better. Anyway, as a male I would like to be able to admire women's physical aspects purely aesthetically; I have no sexual intent of ...
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Is the laughable person beautiful?

All of us when see a laughable comedy star, for example: a fatty actor having a laughable face, i.e: physically laughable whose appearance makes us smile or laugh, we feel happiness and joy. Does this ...
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How to make philosophically sound argument regarding something being beautiful?

We often hear people speak of something as being beautiful. For example, many believe that mathematics is a beautiful subject. What they mean by being beautiful varies by context, and is often ...
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Why does Schopenhauer think aesthetic experience is the suspension of pain and desire?

In an discussion about Schopenhauer , the French philosophy teacher Christophe Salaün says: "L'expérience esthétique est la suspension momentanée de la douleur, du désir. En supprimant provisoirement ...
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What is autonomy in art, where does it come from?

What is autonomy in recent art, where does it come from? I've encountered the concept in contemporary literary criticism, but recall little beyond it being prized by contemporary modernists, it ...
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Trichotomy in philosophy

In many philosophical works and ideas*, it seems like the number 3 gets a major, unexplained emphasis (mostly as a trichotomy). One of the major ideas that uses trichotomy is the Thesis-Antithesis-...
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Aesthetics: why is “formalism” used as a pejorative term?

Socialist realism regarded the avant-garde movements as "formalist". Modern styles like Cubism and Impressionism were considered non-representative forms of art, therefore hard to understand by the ...
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Is true beauty long lasting (through long periods of time)? Is beauty therefore objective?

When people think of objects that are considered "beautiful," people think of gold, diamonds, and crystals. These objects are resistant to change over time and tend to last in their original forms. ...
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Are there central theories on aesthetics?

Are there central theories on aesthetics? I am looking to see if there were any significant philosophers by significant I mean people who often are discussed among university circles today or in the ...
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Is there a theory about art as a perception(way to “see” things?)

Art as a perception as in looking at an object,environment,experience in a thoughtful and slow way ,"appreciating" it,thus letting an object become art.
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Measuring a Person's Aesthetic Sense

Can we measure or evaluate the aesthetic sense of a person? Like, can we statistically say that Person A has a superior aesthetic sense to Person B? Since beauty is relative, can we truly 'grade' ...
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Prerequisites to study aesthetics

So, I plan to begin to self study aesthetics, and was wondering whether a working knowledge of art history would be helpful for the same? If so, would Gardner's History of Art be sufficient? Also, on ...
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What is the goal of tragedy, according to Aristotle and what is the role of the plot in achieving this goal?

I honestly think the goal of tragedy for him is catharsis. And the role of the plot is a story to follow in a logical order.
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Who coined a term in art philosophy refering to the danger of looking at older art through the lens of modern art? And what is it?

For example looking at african art through the lens of picasso, or certain landscape artists as proto-abstract art. Something to do with anachronism, but it was a specific art historian/philosopher ...
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What are some opinions about what beauty is in poetry? [closed]

I am interested in hearing some explanations about what beauty is in poetry and subjectively define what makes a poem beautiful.
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The aesthetic education of man; translation

Can anyone recommend a good translation of The Aesthetic Education of Man by Friedrich Schiller?
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Universality of aesthetic judgment in Kant

In the Critique of Judgement Kant tries to characterise the aesthetic judgement as (among others) universal, i.e as a judgement that we can demand others to have as well as us. If I understand ...
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Had Kant ever said anything about “Beauty is not on the rosy cheeks of a maiden”?

My "Introduction to Aesthetics" textbook (a cheap-looking book made by people of questionable credentials) claims that Immanuel Kant had said something to the effect of "Beauty doesn't lie on the rosy ...
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Aesthetically judging without concepts?

In the Second Moment of the Critique of Judgement, Kant writes about how the universality of the judgment of beauty is without concepts. I understand what he is doing here, but keep wondering whether ...
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Can art be honest?

I was watching an episode of "Penny Dreadful" (ep.04 of season 1, here's the YouTube link for the scene in question: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vxp21dbnRnA). In this episode, Dorian Gray (the one ...
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Kant and the ornament

I am getting somewhat confused about Kant's stance about ornaments. In the Critique of Judgement, Kant seems to make a strict distinction between parergon (the add-ons to say cruely) and ergon (the ...
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Who are some (relatively) modern “platonists” with respect to aesthetics/philosophy of art?

I'm interested in discovering post-Enlightenment to contemporary thinkers who discuss art in terms of form and beauty, and imitation vs "true forms." Thanks!
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Beauty: objective or subjective?

What makes so many philosophers believe beauty is objective?
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Is it ethical to try to convince someone of something without explicitly letting them know what that is?

Is it ethical or virtuous to try to convince someone of something without telling them explicitly what that is? For example, is it ethical to try to convince someone that an art work by Picasso is ...
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When can a creative work be considered to have transcended time?

When does a creative work become timeless? This thought came to me as I listened to the performances at the Alaska International Piano-e-Competition 2018. All of the competitors were spectacular. My ...
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Do philosophers think ethics can't be based on our wishes? [closed]

Some presuppositions: Premise 1. "Wrong" means the reasoning used in an argument was flawed. Another notion of "wrong" is wrong method. Misknowledge how. Definition 2. Wishes are not produced by ...